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wave_sailor

join:2001-04-23

house allergies

I have a house built around 1966. I did a mold test and it seems the only thing they found was heavy dust. I've replaced carpeting and keep it incredibly clean (well vacuum once a week with a hepa filter).

In the morning I can see dust particles flying around. Just by shaking my shirt I can see them. I've seen it come out of the curtains when opening and closing them.

I purchased two air purifiers. I only run them maybe an hour or two a day. They have helped cut down on the dust on surfaces, but still my sinuses are stuffy and clogged in the morning.

I have hot water baseboards that I try to clean and vacuum. I replaced the entire AC and ductwork as well.

I have a basement, which I constantly battle high humidity with. It did have carpeting, but I ripped 90% of it out. The ceiling is 40% finished, with about 30% as a drop ceiling. The walls are painted, but the paint has peeled and chipped off. There is (was) a finished room, but I ripped out the sheetrock against the foundation due to termite problems.



pike
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-01
Washington, DC
kudos:3

I'm not sure what your question is but I have a suggestion if you're looking to significantly reduce the amount of dust in your home. Install a high-quality electronic air cleaner on your furnace, and set your furnace blower to run continuously.



Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1

+1 That will solve OP's problem.


Parneli

join:2004-12-28
Naperville, IL
Reviews:
·VOIPO
reply to wave_sailor

First- running an air filter a few hours a day isn't going to do anything.

The air in your house changes out a couple times a day so just a few hours isn't going to help.

We bought 2 large HEPA units and they run 24/7 for the last few months. Has cut down on dust considerably.

Also if your allergies are worst when you wake up, I'd consider getting a full mattress cover and full pillow cover. Lots of people are allergic to dust mite droppings



ArgMeMatey

join:2001-08-09
Milwaukee, WI
kudos:2
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reply to wave_sailor

Remove all carpet
Do not use a clothesline
Vacuum all furniture, etc. frequently
Use dehumidification or air conditioning to reduce moisture
Do not open the windows for ventilation
As previously mentioned, use a furnace-mounted electronic air cleaner 24x7, bag the mattresses and box springs

There was a funny commercial a few years ago featuring an all-concrete house, including the furniture. Put a floor drain and power washer outlet in each room and waterproof fixtures, and that's my nirvana.
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wave_sailor

join:2001-04-23
reply to pike

ok thanks, I see the company I use for HVAC service does offer some Aprilaire models.



JMHO42

@verizon.net
reply to wave_sailor

You should also verify that you don't have one or more food allergies. Diary foods are famous for causing stuffy/clogged sinuses, even if you're not lactose intolerant or truly allergic to dairy (it's a mucous thing). Wheat allergies can contribute, too (esp. when you also have "itchy eyes"). Just something else (that's more common than you might suspect) to consider.



alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1
reply to ArgMeMatey

said by ArgMeMatey:

There was a funny commercial a few years ago featuring an all-concrete house, including the furniture. Put a floor drain and power washer outlet in each room and waterproof fixtures, and that's my nirvana.

Sounds like a sex hotel thing, gotta hose down everything every time.

TheMG
Premium
join:2007-09-04
Canada
kudos:3
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reply to wave_sailor

Replacing carpet with carpet was a mistake. Carpets are dirt/dust magnets, even the best vacuum cleaner in the world isn't going to be able to extract everything.

Flooring on the other hand is much easier to keep clean, as dust will simply settle on the surface, instead of working its way deep down within the carpet fibers.

And yes, do get a good air cleaner system for your HVAC system, and let the fan run constantly. This will do a much better job than most portable "air purifiers".



nunya
Premium,MVM
join:2000-12-23
O Fallon, MO
kudos:12
Reviews:
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reply to wave_sailor

You could vacuum carpet 20 times a day and it would still have filth in it.

Life is dusty. You'll never be able to turn your house into a "clean room" unless you have Howard Hughes kind of money.
--
If someone refers to herself / himself as a "guru", they probably aren't.


Body Count

join:2010-09-11
Columbus, OH
reply to wave_sailor

I bought a hoover wet carpet cleaner awhile back. Been one of my best purchases. Not only does it fix the spills my son does on the carpet, it helps keep the dust mites under control. Every six months I shampoo the carpets with scalding hot water. I also use the hand attachment and go once over on my bed.

Low humidity kills dust mites as well. You want to be under 40%.

Finally get a good furnace filter. One of those higher grade ones that filter out everything. They cost more but they are worth it. Only downside is you'll have to change it out more often because it's so dense that it clogs up faster. A clogged up air filter will kill your furnace.



dandelion
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join:2003-04-29
Germantown, TN
kudos:5
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reply to wave_sailor

I would start with something simple.. since the problem is in the mornings and work from there.

Allergen pillows, mattress covers, (am assuming you have no pets but if you do..none allowed in the bedroom ) vent so it doesn't blow directly on you at night, no fan, preferably no carpet. Get rid of heavy drapes, fabric and get venetian blinds keeping them clean frequently. No quilted fabric on the bed, get a single layer bedspread without the "stuffing" in it. I would also suggest getting allergy tested.

Get your bedroom as free as possible then go from there.
--
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StubbyinKCMO

join:2008-11-15
Kansas City, MO
reply to wave_sailor

Going to go out on a limb here, but you are aware that YOU are where the dust comes from right? Its dead skin cells mostly flaking off as you live and breathe.

The rest are fibers your clothing loses throughout the day.

As has been stated, keep the fan running continuously and have a good quality air filter in place. They do make electronic air filters for some Furnace/AC stacks. You might want to look into those. Also if the furnace is IN the basement, it may be sucking up dust and dirt if not sealed properly, and blowing it around the house. Just a thought.

Good luck with whichever avenue you choose. I know allergies all to well. Have seasonal hay fever since I was a kid.



Boricua
Premium
join:2002-01-26
Sacramuerto
reply to TheMG

said by TheMG:

Replacing carpet with carpet was a mistake. Carpets are dirt/dust magnets, even the best vacuum cleaner in the world isn't going to be able to extract everything.

This!!

said by TheMG:

Flooring on the other hand is much easier to keep clean, as dust will simply settle on the surface, instead of working its way deep down within the carpet fibers.

When I bought my house, the previous owner used ceramic tile throughout the house.

I used to live in Oakland at an apartment that was pure carpeting except for the kitchen. I used to have a stuffy nose most times. Once I moved to another apartment with less carpeting, my stuffy nose went away.
--
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Raphion

join:2000-10-14
Samsara
reply to wave_sailor

The primary cause of allergies I have in my place is due to pollen tracked into my place on my shoes. leaving shoes at the door helps.


patcat88

join:2002-04-05
Jamaica, NY
kudos:1
reply to wave_sailor

Chinese $20 20 inch plastic boxfans + 20 inch 3M Filtrate whole house AC filter ( I bought this purple grade one »lib.store.yahoo.net/lib/fridgefi···rged.jpg) and duct tape. Now a gazillion CFM air purifier for 1/3rd the price.



ArgMeMatey

join:2001-08-09
Milwaukee, WI
kudos:2
Reviews:
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said by patcat88:

Now a gazillion CFM air purifier for 1/3rd the price.

The question is, "1/3 the price of what? I am sure this is better than nothing, and it may be good enough, but on the other hand, the label on that filter says it outperforms non-electrostatic filters. It does not say it outperforms HEPA or electronic (ozone) filters.
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patcat88

join:2002-04-05
Jamaica, NY
kudos:1

said by ArgMeMatey:

said by patcat88:

Now a gazillion CFM air purifier for 1/3rd the price.

The question is, "1/3 the price of what? I am sure this is better than nothing, and it may be good enough, but on the other hand, the label on that filter says it outperforms non-electrostatic filters. It does not say it outperforms HEPA or electronic (ozone) filters.

1/3rd the price of the average similar or highest CFM cord plugged purifier, example »www.holmesproducts.com/Products.···&page=-1 . Honeywell brand has alot of them too.


ArgMeMatey

join:2001-08-09
Milwaukee, WI
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said by patcat88:

1/3rd the price of the average similar or highest CFM cord plugged purifier, example ... Honeywell brand has alot of them too.

Thanks. I had mis-read the OP's first post; I thought he'd said he had a HEPA air purifier but I think he was saying his vacuum cleaner has a HEPA filter on the motor exhaust.


hortnut
Huh?

join:2005-09-25
PNW
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to wave_sailor

Just a shot in the dark and based on another poster's post about allergies coming from another source, such as food.

How do your allergies manifest themselves? Whoops, 3rd re-read - See it is ""sinuses are stuffy and clogged in the morning."" Another question - where, when and under what circumstances do the symptoms go away? That could be a clue as to source?

Anecdotal information: I have a Caregiver come in to take care of my Folks. She has had problems such as yours. Except she had the addition of draining down the back of the throat and more in addition to what you describe. She went the Dr. route with meds and steroid shots to no avail for a long time. Cannot recall what prompted the next steps, but she learned she was allergic to milk and its products. Stopped consuming that and within 2-3 days all symptoms went away.

She forgot and consumed a milk product one day and all the symptoms returned. It is now 3 months and counting and she has not had any further problems.

It was not a lactose thing, just plain old allergy to milk. Like an allergy to grass pollen.
================================
Story for me: Had water damage to carpet in a 1000 sq ft home that required all to be replaced. I did the tear-out of old carpet, pad, nailing strips and cleanup. Underlayment needed repair in areas [used 5 sheets], so fixed that with new 3/4 inch plywood and sealed/caulked all joints, gaps and holes.

Then got several gallons of oil based lacquer from Home Depot and put several coats of it on the underlayment. Washed all walls and ceilings. Sealed and Painted interior walls and ceiling. Got rid of all drapery's and replaced with new Levolors or similar. Cleaned all other surfaces. Had duct work cleaned and sealed where needed, [house built in 1973] and gas forced air furnace cleaned and any holes sealed, including flue. Not original furnace and less that 4 years old at the time.

Got a Grant and was able to replace all windows, new insulation in underfloor joists and new plastic/poly under house [code thing anyway]. New roof and new gutters. Do assume some of the dust was from what had accumulated in carpet and other surfaces. My problem had been problems with dust and pollen that was getting into home from within and outside. Sneezing, plugged nose, sinuses, headaches, watery, itchy eyes and more. After all was done reduced problems by a very wide margin.

hth



wave_sailor

join:2001-04-23
reply to JMHO42

said by JMHO42 :

You should also verify that you don't have one or more food allergies. Diary foods are famous for causing stuffy/clogged sinuses, even if you're not lactose intolerant or truly allergic to dairy (it's a mucous thing). Wheat allergies can contribute, too (esp. when you also have "itchy eyes"). Just something else (that's more common than you might suspect) to consider.

It does not seem to be related to food. I have milk and half and half in the morning. When I get to work or even just outside, it starts clearing up.

I do have some sort of wheat bread once in a while. It does not seem to affect me.

My wife vacuumed the other day and I came home and my nose started running right away. I blew it about three times after arriving (I was fine up until then). I fired up both air purifiers on high for a while and it seemed to help. It seems like the vacuum is just doing the Lily Muenster thing.